Discover Turner's Yorkshire

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  • Chantry Chapel, Wakefield

    Turner visited Wakefield on his first tour of Yorkshire in 1797.  In the agricultural medieval period Wakefield was one of the wealthiest towns in the region and had some of the best architecture of that period.  The wealth continued into the industrial age, but the beauty of the more functional buildings of that period is perhaps less obvious.  It is clear however, that the Chantry Chapel in Turner's watercolour was rather dilapidated and shortly afterwards it was completely rebuilt.

  • Conisbrough Castle

    Turner visited Conisbrough on his first tour of Yorkshire in 1797, when making his way along the Don valley from Rotherham to Doncaster. At this time the landscape of South Yorkshire was still largely richly agricultural, but around Rotherham and Conisbrough, the first large iron factories were developing.

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  • Constable Burton Village Green

    Turner visited Constable Burton in 1816 when making illustrations for 'A General History of the County of York' by Thomas Dunham Whitaker.  He toured the central dales in late August and early September.  It was probably about the beginning of September when he visited Constable Burton and sketched the front of Constable Burton Hall.  This mansion was built by John Carr of York in 1768 and is still the home of the Wyville family.

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  • Cotter Force

    Turner visited Cotter Force in 1816 during his extensive tour of Yorkshire to collect material for the history of York series. Turner sketched here on either 27 or 28 of July, having spent the night at the nearby Green Dragon Inn in Hardraw where he sketched at both Mossdale Head and Hardraw Force.

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  • Coverham Church

    Turner visited Coverham in the summer of 1816 when making illustrations for 'A General History of the County of York' by Thomas Dunham Whitaker.

    Coverham is located in Coverdale, one of Yorkshire's quietest and least-known valleys, but in the Middle Ages it was the site of an important abbey that flourished under the protection of nearby Middleham Castle.

    The church is now under the care of the Churches Conservation Trust while the ruins of Coverham Abbey have been incorporated into a private house, which can be seen from the road.

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  • Cowthorpe

    Turner passed through Cowthorpe, a small village three miles north of Wetherby, in late August 1816, as he made his way from Farnley to York on the second of his Grand Tours of Yorkshire.

    Turner made three sketches in total.  His subject was the (then) famous Cowthorpe Oak, a regular subject for artists in Turner's time, and it seems obvious from the particularly detailed sketches that he was intending a finished watercolour of the subject, though none seems ever to have been made.


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  • Dob Park Lodge, Washburn Valley

    Dob Park Lodge is an early 17th century lodge on the upper valley side, north of Otley, now in ruins. Turner completed his watercolour,  On the Washburn, under Folly Hall, around 1815.  While a dead tree trunk lying on river bank is the focus of Turner's watercolour, the ruined towers are clearly crowned in the distance.

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  • Dove Scar

    Turner visited West Burton on 28 July 1816 when collecting sketches for illustrating 'A General History of the County of York' by Thomas Dunham Whitaker.  He first sketched the waterfalls in the village of West Burton before exploring Dove Scar, the limestone escarpment further afield.

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  • Dow Cave, near Kettlewell

    Turner visited Dow Cave on his tour of Yorkshire in late July 1816. He stayed at nearby Kettlewell and appears to have hired a guide to show him to the cave and to lead him underground. Turner belonged to the first generation to develop an aesthetic interest in visiting and exploring caves. The taste for exploring underground, though by no means so challenging as modern caving, was still in its infancy, but was sufficiently popular for a guide to the Caves of Yorkshire to have been published in Turner's youth. It is probable that the guides of Kettlewell earned a steady income from showing visitors the local attractions.

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  • Downholme & Ellerton Priory

    Downholme is a small village near Richmond right on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales.  While no specific sketches of Downholme were made by Turner, he  passed through the village when making his way from Marrick Priory to Richmond on 29 July as part of his 1816 tour of Yorkshire.

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